About the campaign

What is the campaign?

Over our 109-year history, the partnership between donors and UQ has had an extraordinary impact on our community, Queensland, Australia, and the world.

While we have come a long way, there is so much more to do and so much more that requires urgent support. We want to ensure that individuals, families and organisations who share our values and vision choose UQ as their trusted partner to achieve their vision for a better world.

The Not if, when campaign is an ambitious philanthropic effort to achieve this transformational impact. It is the first comprehensive philanthropic campaign in the University’s history and will continue for several years as we collectively strive to achieve our common goal for a better world.

Like you, we will not stand by and ‘hope for the best’. We firmly believe that by proactively taking action, together, our greatest days lie ahead. Not if, when.

What are the campaign priorities?

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The goal of the campaign is to galvanise the community and our alumni to help raise the significant funds required for three key priorities:

• Empowering Student Success through life-changing scholarships, accommodation, work experience and study opportunities.

• Transforming Teaching and Learning by attracting and retaining the best academic leaders and providing innovative and effective learning environments.

• Driving Discovery and Impact because from science and sustainability to health and humanities, UQ research outcomes have had a significant impact on people’s lives, all over the world.

Message from the Chairs

Professor Ian Frazer AC FRS and Mrs Caroline Frazer

The Not if, when campaign is a partnership between the generous donors in our community who have a dream for a better world, and UQ, which has the research excellence, resources and people to achieve our donors' ambitions.

Message from the Vice-Chancellor and President

Professor Peter Høj AC

Now, more than ever, our future will be shaped by donors and their vision for a better world.

A History of Giving at UQ


The University of Queensland was established in 1909 by the state government, making it unique amongst universities at the time as it was created by the people and for the people, blind to the class structures of earlier institutes. The sandstone foundations of UQ are built upon the generosity of men and women like you who have dedicated their time and resources to help cure disease, see students of all backgrounds succeed at university, create pest and disease-resistant crops and build stronger economies. For more than a century, generous donors have given funds, time, equipment, property, art and other valuable resources that have transformed the outcomes for students and research at UQ. While this timeline can only highlight a few examples, we value every single gift we have received from our generous supporters.

1920s - As the demand for higher education grew post-WWI, UQ’s inner city campus strained under the pressure. Fortunately, UQ was able to relocate thanks to brother and sister James and Emelia Mayne who donated more than £55,000 to Brisbane City Council for the University's flagship home in St Lucia. The Maynes also donated a considerable amount of land to the University including the Pinjarra Hills site and a portfolio of properties they left as gifts in their wills.

In 1927, the Fryer Library was founded, initially as a modest collection in the office of Dr Frederick ‘Doc Robbie’ Robinson. John ‘Jack’ Denis Fryer, to whom the library is dedicated, was a UQ student and Vice-President of the University Dramatic Society, who died shortly after returning from WWI as a result of injuries sustained during battle. Members of the University Dramatic Society donated £10 to establish an Australian literature library in Jack’s memory. Fellow veteran Doc Robbie took charge of hosting and cultivating the library on behalf of the students, despite never having met Jack.


The UQ Medical School was established in 1936, thanks again to the generosity of the Mayne siblings, whose £5,000 gift underpinned UQ’s ability to create what is now the largest medical program in Australia.


In the wake of the devastation of WWII, a father chose to remember his fallen son with a gift that still has an impact at UQ to this day. The Right Reverend William Henry Webster Stevenson, Bishop of Grafton, gave $600 in memory of his son, a Wing Commander in the Royal Australian Air Force, who gave his life in service of his country. The James Cecil Stevenson Memorial Prize continues to this day.


Since 1954, the A.C.V. Melbourne Prize, established in memory of Alexander Clifford Vernon Melbourne, has been providing an award of books to students who top their second year of a Bachelor of Arts with a major or extended major in history.


In 1967, UQ received an extensive collection of culturally valuable items from the estate of Father Leo Hayes. Father Hayes’ bequest of around 100,000 items was a significant addition to the Fryer Library’s collection. It also included ethnographic objects, which are now held at the UQ Anthropology Museum and ancient coins that are held in the R D Milns Antiquities Museum.


Since 1972, as a result of the Randall Silcock Bursary, UQ medical students have been able to travel to disadvantaged or remote communities during their summer break to provide medical assistance and build their professional and interpersonal skills.


In 1985, the Fryer Library received some of the works of one of Australia’s most revered sculptors, Daphne Mayo, after she left them to UQ in her will.

Mayo’s most famous carvings and sculptures include the tympanum atop Brisbane City Hall, the Queensland Women’s War Memorial and the statue of Major General William Glasgow, which sits in Brisbane’s Post Office Square.


Dr Dorothy Hill was the first female professor at an Australian university and the first woman to be admitted as a Doctor of Science at The University of Queensland. She was also a generous supporter of the UQ Library and the School of Earth Sciences during her life, donating not only funds but valuable tools and equipment as well.

In 1997, after her passing, the Physical Sciences and Engineering Library was refurbished and renamed the Dorothy Hill Physical Sciences and Engineering Library, in honour of one of the Library’s most generous benefactors.


Starting in 2003, support from Chuck Feeney and The Atlantic Philanthropies led to the establishment of four major research institutes and centres at UQ, the UQ Art Museum, and a A$50 million grant to the Translational Research Institute (TRI).

The impact of these gifts has been felt throughout UQ and the local community, cementing UQ’s position as one of the world’s leading research and teaching institutes.


In 2013, a donation from Dr Paul Eliadis (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery ’77, Bachelor of Science ’78) enabled the creation of a chair in Classics and Ancient History at UQ. This allowed UQ to appoint a leading expert in classical tradition, Dr Alastair Blanshard (Bachelor of Arts (First Class Honours) ’93, Master of Arts ’96).

As UQ is the only Queensland university to offer courses across all areas of the history, archaeology, culture, language and literature of Ancient Greece and Rome, the Paul Eliadis Chair of Classics and Ancient History ensures Australia can continue to produce top scholars across these areas.

Not If, When

It is as true today as ever. When you and UQ partner together amazing things can happen. Lives are made healthier, environments are protected, futures are nurtured, families are supported, culture is enriched and societies’ injustices are tackled head on. While we have the expertise, the passion and the determination, it is side-by-side with you that we can move much faster towards success. Together, we can confidently say: ‘Not if, when.